Saturday, September 13, 2014

Roaming is a Nightmare

I'm going to Europe for the first time and I have mixed feelings on roaming while I'm there.

From one perspective it would be nice to still be in touch with friends and family while on the trip; and also be able to communicate with family and my wife in Europe. It would also be great because I'm a fairly 'connected' person; 

  • My fitbit won't sync while I'm away from a data source.
  • I use Evernote for doodling, making lists and generally organizing my life.
  • I teach and I've moved all my materials into the cloud to simplify access from my various devices and the locations I find myself accessing them from.

So being able to retain some access to my normal life seems like a good idea.

The challenge is three-pronged; mobile data service is sometimes questionable at best and I've never been to Europe before; I'm not entirely sure what I'm getting myself into; finally a trip across multiple countries (and including a cruise) is a lot to take into consideration.

Let me do this backwards.

The trip involves three separate land masses, six countries and a cruise. Now I didn't even know you get cell service on cruises but there is cell service at sea now. So that essentially counts as another country in terms of roaming and one where the deals are even more convoluted. So for example T-Mobile offers a global roaming plan, which is excellent and solves the majority of the headaches. The shortfall is they don't cover the cruise ships, bummer.

Now all this leads to the part where I have mixed feelings vs a smattering of thoughts. I'm going on a European vacation for the first time and for the first time I'm travelling with a decent camera. It's only a few weeks I'll be gone and there will be wifi at some ports, this is the perfect chance for me to read, see the sights, capture beautiful images and relax.

So yes. Roaming is a nightmare but it presents one of those rare opportunities to disconnect for a good reason. It would be too expensive and difficult and for all of that, the real reason for the trip could lose some of it's value. It's a nightmare I won't be having.

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